knoe 8 news, knoe.com, monroe, downtown monroe, revitalization - KNOE 8 News; KNOE-TV; KNOE.com |

Efforts are being made to bring life back to Downtown Monroe

Posted: Updated: Nov 30, 2012 06:53 PM

MONROE, La. (KNOE 8 News) - Downtown Monroe has taken on new life over the past year and its no accident, several people are working behind the scenes to make it happen.

For years downtown Monroe seemed to stand still. Business moved outward and buildings were boarded up. But lately, the area seems to have caught a second wind. "We wanted to show people that there were things going on and revitalization there," said Myra Gatling-Akers, Director of Downtown Development, she along with a team of people have worked to bring the heart of the city back to life.

Gatling-Akers says for a while, only people needing to go to a government office or the hospital found themselves downtown. As a result, the group created an atmosphere to encourage people to hang out, with events like gallery crawls, the downtown river jam, and most recently the RiverMarket. "You have to get people downtown first so that business will want to locate," said Gatling-Akers and added that the RiverMarket has acted as a catalyst for progress, bringing hundreds to the area each weekend. "I just think that helped speed up the momentum of what was already happening".

Now private developers and businesses buying up and renovating downtown property. While much progress has been made, Gatling-Akers says there is more work to be done and the people of Monroe may see some changes to downtown within the next year. "I expect to see quite a few new things," she said.

In the works, several old buildings have been bought up, and a developer is looking into the possibility of opening a boutique hotel, a new restaurant is coming, and the city is working on building floating docks, giving access to downtown from the river.

This weekend, a record breaking 110 vendors are signed up for the RiverMarket. The hours for the market will be extended until seven Saturday evening.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Mom held without bail-infants found dead

    Mom held without bail-infants found dead

    Monday, September 15 2014 10:48 AM EDT2014-09-15 14:48:16 GMT
    (CNN)-A foul smell leads police to a Massachusetts home. What they found inside landed a mother behind bars.
    (CNN)-A foul smell leads police to a Massachusetts home. What they found inside landed a mother behind bars.
  • Miss America

    Miss America

    Monday, September 15 2014 9:02 AM EDT2014-09-15 13:02:48 GMT
    ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) - The new Miss America won her crown after singing a Pharrell Williams song while playing with a red plastic cup, a performance she says was inspired by a similar scene in a move.
    ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) - The new Miss America won her crown after singing a Pharrell Williams song while playing with a red plastic cup, a performance she says was inspired by a similar scene in a move.
  • 2014 ArkLaMiss Fair Schedule

    2014 ArkLaMiss Fair Schedule

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 2:37 PM EDT2014-09-02 18:37:25 GMT
    2014 ArkLaMiss Fair Schedule of Events
    2014 ArkLaMiss Fair Schedule of Events
  • Tax preparer arrested for fraudulent tax claims

    Tax preparer arrested for fraudulent tax claims

    Monday, September 15 2014 9:56 AM EDT2014-09-15 13:56:20 GMT
    BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - State revenue officials say a Tallulah woman has been arrested and faces more than 30 felony counts related to a 60,000 tax fraud scheme.
    BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - State revenue officials say a Tallulah woman has been arrested and faces more than 30 felony counts related to a 60,000 tax fraud scheme.
  • Ouachita Parish school bus driver allegedly assaults rider

    Ouachita Parish school bus driver allegedly assaults rider

    Friday, September 12 2014 7:58 PM EDT2014-09-12 23:58:11 GMT
    OUACHITA PARISH, La. (KNOE 8 News)- Parent Felicia Moore says the driver tried to force her daughter off the bus at a stop she was not supposed to get off at.
    OUACHITA PARISH, La. (KNOE 8 News)- Parent Felicia Moore says the driver tried to force her daughter off the bus at a stop she was not supposed to get off at.
  • Shooting at Monroe Daycare Center

    Shooting at Monroe Daycare Center

    Friday, September 12 2014 2:59 PM EDT2014-09-12 18:59:51 GMT
    Monroe, La (KNOE 8 News & MPD)- The Monroe Police Department responded to a shooting in the parking lot of the Wonderland Daycare Center located at 1705 Hickory Street Friday morning.
    Monroe, La (KNOE 8 News & MPD)- The Monroe Police Department responded to a shooting in the parking lot of the Wonderland Daycare Center located at 1705 Hickory Street Friday morning.
  • Neville Coaches and Players Speak Out

    Neville Coaches and Players Speak Out

    Friday, September 12 2014 10:39 PM EDT2014-09-13 02:39:37 GMT
    MONROE, La. (KNOE News)--Neville football players and coaches are doing much better than earlier in the week, after junior Cole Tracey collapsed on the field.
    MONROE, La. (KNOE News)--Neville football players and coaches are doing much better than earlier in the week, after junior Cole Tracey collapsed on the field.
  • Two inmates escape from Lincoln Parish Detention Center

    Two inmates escape from Lincoln Parish Detention Center

    Sunday, September 14 2014 11:51 AM EDT2014-09-14 15:51:03 GMT
    RUSTON, La. (KNOE 8 News) - Authorities in Lincoln Parish are searching for two inmates who escaped the Lincoln Parish Detention Center. Paul James Landry and Dennis James Harrell were trustees working outside the detention center when they escaped Saturday around 6:00 p.m.
    RUSTON, La. (KNOE 8 News) - Authorities in Lincoln Parish are searching for two inmates who escaped the Lincoln Parish Detention Center. Paul James Landry and Dennis James Harrell were trustees working outside the detention center when they escaped Saturday around 6:00 p.m.
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KNOE. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.